What is Common Core and how will it effect me?
1 view | +0 today
Follow
Your new post is loading...
Your new post is loading...
Scooped by Rose Heim
Scoop.it!

Common Core: Middle School

Common Core: Middle School | What is Common Core and how will it effect me? | Scoop.it
Visit Middle School classrooms who have begun to adapt to the new Common Core State Standards. Learn what changes Middle School teachers are making in their teaching techniques to adapt to the new standards.
Rose Heim's insight:

In my attempt to find a reasonable explanation of Common Core for the layperson, I found this nice video from teachingchannel.org which helps to explain a little bit about middle school math curriculum and also the standards in Language Arts at that level. I think that it will be valuable as a teacher to have resources like this one to help explain the standards to parents/guardians, especially since there is so much information and misinformation about Common Core Standards out there. For anyone who is a bit skeptical about the reasons behind these new standards and how they can be beneficial to our youth this video can help answer some of their questions. The big push is for college and career readiness. I cannot speak to the effectieness of Common Core in making a child ready for life - it is simply too new to judge, but I know from past conversations with parents of kids entering college that many of their children have had to take entry level reading and math courses before taking "college level" courses in those subjects. Whether it was the fault of previous standards or something about the particular student is difficult to discern. At any rate, I believe there are good intentions here - something needed to change. I am very interested in hearing all of the positive and negative press about common core. When we are teachers in another year or two we will probably hear alot of the same. It will serve us well to know what discussion points are out there and to have informed responses. As an example, the video talked about the misconception that "common core says 1 + 1 can = 3". This really resonated with me. I had actually heard something similar - that with Common Core kids could approach a problem in any way that they wanted and it didn't matter whether the answer was right or wrong. I can see how both of these ideas have a ring of truth to them. When we allow kids to explore and discover ideas in math they may come up with wild ideas and they may fail at first. Educators can let the children go through this process and it can be beneficial, but we must be careful to remember that there IS a right answer. Off track thinking has to be reigned in. I think it's great that there will be more independent thinking in my future class but that in itself is not the answer to prepare kids for the world. Another complaint that I have heard and that was mentioned in the video is that in Language Arts there is less emphasis on the classics. Again, true, but with an explanation. When the kids graduate and get a job they aren't going to be given an instruction manual in the style of Shakespeare or Whitman. Kids are  expected to be able to understand informational texts...something that is very useful in a job (or in a math class). There is only so much time in the school day and I think it is important to prepare kids for reality. Hopefully the Common Core Standards will deliver on their promises.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Rose Heim
Scoop.it!

COLUMN: Common Core turns focus to teacher training | 9news.com

COLUMN: Common Core turns focus to teacher training | 9news.com | What is Common Core and how will it effect me? | Scoop.it
Rose Heim's insight:

I appreciate the notion that proper teacher training and accountability are the answers to student success in Common Core. I had this opinion for a long time. But recently I have begun to question some of my own thinking, especially the notion of how to measure teacher accountability. The change? Actual classroom observation and discussion with teachers in the trenches. I do agree with the 9news report as far as the importance of preparing teachers to teach "in the way" of the new standards of Common Core.  I appreciate that I am in this new class of educators and feel badly for current teachers who feel like their whole world is being turned upside down by the standards. I am not sure how they are being prepared for the changes, but that discussion will have to be tabled for now. I also agree with the report in that teachers can fairly be evaluated based on a "value added" scale. In other words, do my students know more today than they did yesterday. But, my concern is the standardized tests that are coming on the heels of the standards. These are the results that are published - these are the results the PTA's will be discussing - these are the results new families will look at when picking an area in which to relocate - these are the results that I used to think mattered. Now I couldn't disagree more. I see that standardized tests are delivered at a date and time predetermined by someone other than me, the (future) teacher. It doesn't matter if I fall behind the schedule because I need to reteach material that my mostly ELL class did not get the first time. It doesn't matter if there are 3 snow days. The test comes when the test comes and we may not be ready. It is the same test for every class - it doesn't really matter what their ability levels are. Really? I find it so interesting that we (future educators) are taught to differentiate instruction, to fit our instruction to our students, and yet have these one-size fits all tests. I can only hope that over the next few years these issues will be addressed and I will be judged on what I can do with who I am given.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Rose Heim
Scoop.it!

Straight Up Conversation: Common Core Guru Jason Zimba

Straight Up Conversation: Common Core Guru Jason Zimba | What is Common Core and how will it effect me? | Scoop.it
Jazon Zimba is the founding principal of Student Achievement Partners and lead writer of the Common Core mathematics standards. I appreciated having a chance to sit down and chat with him about the whole ordeal.
Rose Heim's insight:

Jason Zimba was lead writer of the Common Core math standards so I was interested to see his take on all the commotion about its implementation. He said he knows there are misinterpretations out there, good and not so good curicculum being developed to match the standards, disagreement because some of the standards lack clarity. But he stands by them. My concern is that we should have seen some of these pitfalls and worked to mitigate them before rolling it out. Were there discussions about standard curriculums to go with the standards? If not, I wonder how much different common core is than the individual state systems that were already in place. After all, if something is subject to interpretation, there will be multiple interpretations.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Rose Heim
Scoop.it!

Get in the Game | Common Core

Get in the Game | Common Core | What is Common Core and how will it effect me? | Scoop.it
Rose Heim's insight:

This blog entry was in response to the article above in which Jason Zimba was interviewed. I agree with Lynne Munson. In the end, this is what we must do - get in the game. Common Core isn't going anywhere...so be prepared for backlash, educate yourself so that you can talk intelligently about concerns, and then get to work!

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Rose Heim
Scoop.it!

Common Core: What it is and isn't

Common Core: What it is and isn't | What is Common Core and how will it effect me? | Scoop.it
Every teacher in the country will not be teaching the same thing at the same time or use the same materials because of the CCSS.
Rose Heim's insight:

This blog entry is defending the ideas behind the new common core standards and states that people who say that some of what is being taught is inappropriate (specific assignments) are uninformed about what common core is all about. While it is true that common core is a set of guidelines and not specific assignments, the blog ignores the fact that new materials (texts, assessments) are being developed for use in common core implementation. School systems have freedom  in choosing resources to help implement the core standards and some choices will not measure up to every person's expectations. There has always been controversy attached to what is or is not taught in textbooks and there always will be. I was recently very surprised and disturbed by a video shown as part of a new science curriculum that was designed for common core. It was a cartoon in which a boy comes home from school and says he's running low on energy. His mom is portrayed as a pretty ditzy woman who tries to satisfy his need by pushing unhealthy snacks at him. The video made her seem pretty uninformed about nutrition to the point where the child had to be the voice of reason - he ended up requesting a healthy snack option and explained to his mom why his way was better. I could see how the kids could feel good about knowing about healthy nutritional choices but any time a resource makes parents look dumb seems like a bad idea to me. I suspect that there will continue to be controversy about resources as long as there are educators to use them.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Rose Heim
Scoop.it!

Teacher slams scripted Common Core lessons that must be taught ‘word for word’

Teacher slams scripted Common Core lessons that must be taught ‘word for word’ | What is Common Core and how will it effect me? | Scoop.it
'It doesn’t matter how my students learn best.'
Rose Heim's insight:

This blog post brings out some interesting points about the situations in which teachers are given new curriculum written to common core standards and told that they must adhere exactly to the script, a decision made by a school principal or district. I have been observing a class with such scripted instruction. Everything from the warm-up through the finish of class is already laid out and the teacher must adhere to it. This really bothers me. I have seen nothing of this teacher or what she can plan or how she would have students work individually or in pairs. Everything is by the book, down to the amount of time each step will take. To me, this is demeaning to the teacher. When did she become obsolete in this process? There doesn't seem to be anything in this package that works to address the different needs of students. In the class that I observe I seldom see a student ask a question and when they do they are told to "just do what it tells you to do". I certainly hope that I am not handed such a scripted curriculum to teach. But if I am, I think I will try to find a way to make it my own - to add to it - to get the students to think past the small spoon-fed portions that they get each day.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Rose Heim
Scoop.it!

Parents returning to school to help children with Common Core-inspired homework

Parents returning to school to help children with Common Core-inspired homework | What is Common Core and how will it effect me? | Scoop.it
Editor’s note: This is the second in an occasional series looking at how Belle Chasse Primary School in Plaquemines Parish is adjusting to the Common Core standards …
Rose Heim's insight:

This article made me think about an aspect of common core that I had not yet considered. The idea that parents had not seen some of the methods of learning mathematics that their elementary school children were learning means that I probably have not seen those methods either. These are students who will be coming into my classroom with different methods of working out problems than I am comfortable with right now. Not only do I need to teach my content differently, I have to adjust to the ways they have been taught previous content.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Rose Heim
Scoop.it!

New Testing for Common Core State Standards Impacts Classroom Practices Fo ... - Science Daily (press release)

New Testing for Common Core State Standards Impacts Classroom Practices Fo ... - Science Daily (press release) | What is Common Core and how will it effect me? | Scoop.it
Oakland Local
New Testing for Common Core State Standards Impacts Classroom Practices Fo ...
Science Daily (press release)
Oct. 21, 2013 — States across the country have started to implement the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics (CCSSM).
Rose Heim's insight:

Based on this report, some feel that once the new assessments for common core kick in teachers will figure out what exact content is emphasized, teach that, and ignore other aspects of the standards. They will base their instruction on the test versus the standard. I could see how that temptation might come into play. I was able to speak with some teachers recently, after they had hand-graded a portion of one of these tests. The students did not perform well at all on it, even though similar material had been covered in class. Differences in problem presentation, word choice, unclear directions...these were all areas of concern. If it were me I would seriously be examining the specifics of what I taught versus what was on the test and I would be thinking about how the two could more closely be aligned.

more...
No comment yet.